Subject: quick-trip dilemma
Dear Ziners, With your help, I planned the perfect trip to Paris for my 50th B'day. Direct, nonstop flight from Pittsburgh (home) and 6 nights in a romantic Marais hotel. Even chose the perfect coach seats. I was fairly calm about the USAirways possible strike/shutdown and the possibility of our trip being cancelled or postponed, until yesterday, when several complicating factors were brought to my attention.

I need your help to figure out what the heck I'm going to do.

1. USAirways says that if service is interrupted, we can reschedule at a later date for the same fare as we originally paid. I don't have much of a desire to go to Paris in the summer, and I understand that rooms in May are impossibly hard to get. Does anyone have experience with Paris is late spring? Is it really so hard to get your accomodations of choice?

I wouldn't mind rescheduling for the first week in May, but several people I know say that they are having trouble getting rooms in late April and May.

2. I could use the fantastic TWA offer of 198$ USD from cities east of the Mississippi (that's us) plus 10,000 FF miles for trips to London, Paris, Madrid, and Milan, for travel ending by April 15. This option means taking horrid prop jets from Pittsburgh to New York (a one hour trip by USAirways jets; a two hour trip on the tiny props that all the other airlines codeshare out of Pittsburgh), and transferring. We may or may not be able to match our days to Paris, but this option certainly makes a quick 6 night getaway possible, but less convenient. One of the reasons we chose Paris is because of the ease of getting there for a relatively short stay.

So, how would you feel about rebooking on this bargain deal with less convenient flights?

3. We could take the TWA deal and go someplace else. Madrid doesn't thrill me; and I've done London in the early spring recently; Paris we've examined above. That leaves us with MILAN:

I've taken a look at logistics and it seems it would be easy enought to get from Milan to Santa Margherita by train, stay a few days, train down to the Cinque Terre, stay a few days, and finish off in Milan. OR One of the Lakes......also easy to get to from Milan, but it seems that much activity is restricted in this area at dates so early in the spring. Again, all travel has to be completed by April 15. We might find many places closed, as well as severely curtailed boat services. Is this true? I would like to know what those of you who are familiar with this area think (Marco?). Could you recommend any other itineraries that are easy by train from Milan? Don't forget the weather.

Or we could just sit back and see what happens, hoping that USAirways resolves its problems without an interruption of service. Local sources tell me that this isn't likely. Is anyone else holding USAirways tickets for dates after March 25?

I could sure use some feedback........ Thanks, Debbie